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Pear Snacking Cake

I've been making this cake for years.  
It's moist and flavourful and perfect to pack for lunch or serve with afternoon coffee.
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • canned pears;  drain and chop each pear into 6 -9 pieces  to make approximately 2 cups (reserve 1/4 cup pear juice)
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
  • 1 2/3 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • reserved 1/4 cup pear juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  1. Grease the bottom of a 9 inch square pan.
  2. Cream butter and sugar until light coloured and well blended.
  3. Add eggs beating well after each one.
  4. Add vanilla, canned pears and orange rind, beating well.  The beaters will chop up the pears even more and the mixture will look somewhat curdled.
  5. Add dry ingredients and pear syrup and mix at low speed just until well blended.
  6. Fold in nuts.
  7. Spread batter in prepared pan.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees ºF for 25-35 minutes.  To test for doneness, insert toothpick in centre of cake.  If it comes out dry, cake is done.
  9. Frost with Browned butter icing:
Browned Butter Icing:

NOTE: This frosting sets in a very short time so work quickly when making it.

  • 1/4 cup butter 
  • 2 cups icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla  
  • 2 or 3 tablespoons cream

  1. In a medium pot, melt  butter over medium heat, watching closely.
  2. When it begins to turn a golden brown, remove from heat and add icing sugar.
  3. Working quickly, beat icing sugar with a spoon, adding vanilla and enough cream to make it of spreading consistency.
  4. Stir in  and spread over cake.
  5. When the frosting has almost set but is still a bit warm I use the flat tines of a fork to press a pattern in the top of the cake.


  1. I may have missed it, but where do you use the reserved pear juice?

  2. This is a beautiful snack cake. I love the fall flavor of pears. Awesome.


  3. My husband will adore this since he loves pears. Thanks.

  4. Something old is new again: that lovely design in the icing reminds me of the ideas we used for simple cakes to make them just a bit special, using what we had and costing almost nothing. Dusting with icing sugar over a paper doily and lifting the paper to see the pattern; sprinkling with brown sugar and putting the pan under the broiler for a bit. Didn't we eat well for so little?


  5. At what point do you use the reserved pear juice?

    1. Thanks to both you and Lynn for noticing the omission. I've added it now.

  6. How many tins of pears do you generally need?
    And I also would like to know when you use the reserved juice.
    This sounds like a lovely recipe!

  7. I used my own canned pears which is why I measured out the cut up pears. but I believe a 1 pound tin would be equivalent.

  8. You said you added when to add the reserved pear juice? I'm not seeing it.

  9. Does the juice go in the cake ? or the icing?

  10. this looks delicious. When you say soda do you mean club soda? can you use fresh pears instead?

    1. I should have said Baking Soda. It's a leavening agent like baking powder if you are not familiar with baking terms.

  11. I made this cake yesterday and it was moist and delicious! Next time I will cut the sugar in the icing to 2-3 cups though as we found it a bit sweet. Definitely a keeper though.

    1. I should add that I doubled the recipe.

  12. Looks so delicious! Can't wait to try it!

  13. I used a small tin of canned pears and almost all of the juice and it was perfect in terms of moisture. This recipe is a keeper! Absolutely delicious.